Canada N.S. teen hockey player angry after probe finds taunts not racial
Willie O'Ree on racism in hockey: 'I guess it's going to take quite a while before it's over'
Willie O’Ree, the first black player to lace up in the National Hockey League, can’t believe racial slurs are still spewed on the ice at the highest levels of the sport. “I thought we’ve come a long ways but it looks like we’ve taken one step forward and two steps back. I guess it’s going to take quite a while before it’s over. I don’t know if it will ever be over,” O’Ree said Sunday in a corner of the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park. He “I thought we’ve come a long ways but it looks like we’ve taken one step forward and two steps back. I guess it’s going to take quite a while before it’s over. I don’t know if it will ever be over,” O’Ree said Sunday in a corner of the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park.
The Cape Breton teen who made allegations of racism in minor hockey says he is angry at the results of a provincial investigation.
Sixteen-year-old Logan Prosper of Whycocomagh, N.S., said he was, when he and the Cape Breton West Islanders were playing the Northside Vikings Midget A team.
Hockey Nova Scotia investigated and said in a statement this week that an insulting remark was made, but it was not racial.
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Prosper said that does not make any sense.
"I don't even know what's racial anymore," the Mi'kmaw teen told CBC's Information Morning Cape Breton.
"I don't understand how they can decide which is racial or not, not only to me, but to anybody. It can't just be their decision."
Prosper said he was told by more than one player that he looked "like a turd" and that "all Natives look like turds."
Prosper's father, Phillip, said one of the investigators told him 56 witnesses were interviewed and it was determined who had made a remark to his son.
"He said, 'Oh, in the course of the investigation, we found who said it, but he didn't mean it racially,'" Prosper said. "So I was kind of taken aback by it.
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"I was thinking to myself, 'Well, you kind of did find that what my son, what Logan said, kind of happened.'"
Prosper said he and his son have no doubt about the intent of the remarks and said racial taunts continued on and off the ice.
"The fact that Hockey Nova Scotia and the investigators are trying to determine and preach to us what is racial and what isn't, that day, that comment clearly was racial," he said.
After the Prospers made the issue public, a movement started to have players useto raise awareness of racism in the sport. It was taken up by teams and players across Canada and into the United States and Europe.
Phillip Prosper said that was a positive outcome, but he said after the local investigation found no racism, some people on social media started calling the Prospers liars.
He said that is taking a positive and "just turning everything back into such a negative thing."
Officials from the Northside minor hockey association and Hockey Nova Scotia declined to comment.
But in its statement, Hockey Nova Scotia acknowledged the problem is widespread and said.
"We know that racism exists in our society and that our rinks are not exempt," the provincial body said. "We encourage all of our members who experience racism to report it. It has no place in our game."
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